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Friday, December 24, 2010


Hello again from Haiti,

Hope this finds you all well. Sometimes I feel like when I write here, it’s just out there to the universe. Then people comment on what I say, and I realize again how many people read this and want to hear from happenings in Haiti. Thank you for that!! And I apologize again (seems I do that a lot; I better stop) for waiting so long to write. I didn’t even want to see how long, but I forgot what I wrote about last!

Yes, Chibelson! So I’ll start with an update on him. He is in Knoxville, TN, with Kendall. He’s had two surgeries to remove the stones in his ureters. The stone in his kidneys is not moving and I think they’re going to leave it (have to trust the doctors – me, I’d say take it out while he’s there). Apparently you can live with it. He’s doing very well – as been gaining weight and is sitting by himself. He turned a year this month, so hopefully he can soon catch up with his age groups. He’s coming back with Kendall on Jan. 5.

My Caleb is growing well and is a continued joy to me, and all of the people here. He’s so active and smiley all the time, which is probably why he also sleeps a lot. He loves rice and beans and is getting strong. He can hold onto fingers and be lifted up completely, and he’ll hold onto the top of the crib and walk up the sides. This week he’s also learned to stand without holding on to something. Guess he will soon be walking. He just turned 10 months old.

Our weather has turned beautiful. I didn’t remember December to be this cold already. (it’s a good time to visit –hint hint). People are looking for blankets at night. And I’m looking for warmer clothes for Caleb. It’s fun to be able to dress him up more – instead of having him go with only a diaper all day and night. Of course, it makes for lots more laundry.

We’ve had different teams here in the last couple months, and have gotten a lot of work done. The new clinic is in it’s last stages of completion. All the floors are tiled. We’re working at finishing the painting. Everything has a couple coats already, but what with tiling and all, it needs it’s final coat. The last team that was here (a team of 27 from Oregon) was able to move my existing pharmacy shelves to the new clinic, (though they pulled them all apart) and rebuilt them. I now have a thousand dollars’ worth of shelves in the new pharmacy – 5 shelves about 40 ft long. It’s getting its last coat of paint this weekend and hopefully next week I can start filling them. That is one ‘looked forward to’ project. Right now I have my meds scattered in so many places. It will be wonderful to have it all in one place and be able to see what we have. Hopefully we can keep the rats out of it, since the doors aren’t in yet. (We have steel doors in already.)

The container with all the furniture for the new clinic is enroute. It also has the wooden doors. Pray that customs won’t take long. Right now there’s a major hold up at customs, and they’ve basically stopped for this year. They say they’ll start again in Feb. That seems a long time to wait since we’re this close to done.

I don’t think I’ve written here about the way God blessed us with the needed clinic stuff. A friend, Dell, from Victoria works with getting stuff together for missions, and she filled a container for us. She had so many ‘Divine provisions’ it is awesome to hear. For example, a 5 room clinic called her up and said they’re remodeling the whole thing, and she has a day or so to come pick up anything she wants; including consultation tables, chairs, cupboards, dental chair, otoscopes, blood pressure machines, etc etc. SO awesome! Even a little used X-ray machine from a cruise ship, where of course you have to have the ultimate and change them every so often.

This has been a very slow month at the clinic, due to all the political unrest and, I imagine, the holidays, and everyone saving up their money. We’ve only had one day with over 60 patients. This isn’t a good month for it to happen, since in Haiti you have to pay your employees and extra month of wages in December for a bonus but God has and always will provide. We have added a guy to our staff that is an x-ray technician. Until we have the x-ray going, he is working in the pharmacy. Our doctor is working out real well too. He is perfect for our needs here. He understands the culture, teaches the nurses, and loves kids, so fits in at Canaan as well.

Yesterday we took the staff out to a little restaurant for a holiday celebration. They enjoyed it, especially after they got their gifts!! J We were blessed with friends that came down from Canada, and who brought good gifts for all of them.

We’re not doing a lot of Christmas celebration this year, but plan a big New Year’s celebration. (New Year is also Haiti’s Independence Day). We have a group coming on the 27th, and they’re bringing turkey and ham, so it should be good.

Many of you have heard of the political unrest here. Right now things are calm again. The corruptness in the government is incredible. I don’t support the violence that went on but I can’t help applauding the people of Haiti trying to let their voice be heard. How can or should they react to this type of government and foreign control here? They have postponed further elections till after the holidays. Apparently now they’re deciding between 3 people for president. But basically everyone knows who’ll get in – the one that has the current government and foreign people backing him up; the one that put in millions of false ballots before people even started voting. The one that shouldn’t even have entered the top list if everything had been done legally. But, TIH! (This Is Haiti)

This year is almost over. What a year! I can’t believe how many things can happen in a country in one year. This has been such an eventful year in Haiti – the earthquake, which was an unbelievable and surreal happening, the hurricane (which was really scary for Haiti, because it had the potential to kill hundreds of thousands. Thankfully God spared the P au P area, which is where the majority of people in tents are), the cholera which killed over 2,000 people and sickened almost 100,000 thousand and continues in its deadly path, and then the elections, which turned deadly for many. And between all this, people suffering from hunger, loss of everything they had, loss of family, sickness, and discouragement. I know most of you reading this cannot grasp this kind of life. I cannot grasp it, and I drive by it all the time. Once in awhile it really hits me, but the helplessness that I feel in those times is not a “comfortable” feeling and I don’t think I have learned yet how to respond to it. How much do we avoid the “uncomfortableness” of a situation and therefore do not do anything? (just something to reflect on in our lives).

And yet, in spite of all this, the Haitian people still live and survive. The numbers in tents is slowing going down. From July to Dec it went from 1.5 million to 1.0 million. It’s good or rather better than nothing, but imagine a million people still living in a tent.

Let's pray this coming year will be a good year for Haiti. Pray for a better government. Pray for funds and jobs for the people. Pray for the people caring and trying to help. And thank God for His protection.

Hope you all have a good Christmas and a fruitfull and good new year.